Joy Meek

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Joy joined Wheeler Kearns Architects in 1998 and became a principal in 2006. She has worked on numerous residential and institutional projects including an adaptive reuse and expansion project for Marwen, a nonprofit arts organization that provides free art classes to students in Chicago. The project has received several awards including a National SEED Award for Excellence in Public Interest Design and an AIA Chicago Interior Architecture Award.

For The Night Ministry’s new home, Joy helped create an uplifting refuge for young adults facing adversity by using trauma-informed design practices that promote feelings of emotional and physical safety. The project transformed three floors of a 1910 heavy-timber manufacturing building to include “The Crib” – an overnight shelter for young adults ages 18-24, a serving kitchen and dining space, administrative offices, meeting rooms, and multi-purpose programming space for social services, job assistance, and group activities. Joy helped facilitate a 50′ dynamic, colorful mural in collaboration with students at Marwen that embodies hope and healing. The project has received five awards, including an AIA Illinois Honor Award. Additional award-winning projects include the Ryan Learning Center at the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Richard Gray Gallery Warehouse.

Joy graduated from University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies in 1995 with University Honors and continued her education at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design. She graduated with a Master of Architecture in 1998. While at the GSD, Joy collaborated with the University of Toronto and architect Brigitte Shim to install an exhibit of projects for Toronto’s waterfront at Toronto’s Queens Quay Terminal. Before graduating and joining Wheeler Kearns Architects, she interned at a number of architecture firms and worked on various projects including interior office spaces, private residences, and elementary schools.

Joy is a registered architect in the State of Illinois, a registered LEED accredited professional and a member of the American Institute of Architects. She has also served as a mentor for the Illinois Math and Science Academy’s Student Inquiry and Research Program, working with high school students interested in the field of architecture on a year-long research investigation.

Joy and her husband, Jamie Cook, an architect at Krueck + Sexton, live in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood with their two children.

1998                     . MArch, Harvard University, Graduate School of Design
1995 BSAS, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Professional Experience
2006-present Wheeler Kearns Architects, Chicago, Principal
1998-present Wheeler Kearns Architects, Chicago, Project Architect
1997 Legat Architects, Oak Brook, Intern Architect
1993, 94, 95 Hydzik Schade Associates, Chicago, Intern Architect
Academic Experience
2015-present Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Northwestern University, Adjunct Lecturer
2015-2016 Illinois Math and Science Academy Student Inquiry and Research Mentor
2009-2010 Illinois Math and Science Academy Student Inquiry and Research Mentor
2003-2004 Illinois Math and Science Academy Student Inquiry and Research Mentor
2001-2002 Illinois Math and Science Academy Student Inquiry and Research Mentor
Professional Registration
Academic Experience
2007-present American Institute of Architects
2007-present US Green Building Council, Member, LEED AP
2016-present Chicago Women in Architecture (CWA)
Speaking Engagements
2022 Architect-US Hiring Process Chat Series
2021 CRAN Chat: “Mentoring Our Staff”
2020 CRAN/AIA “The Covid Practice”
2020 “Works and Working” Madison College, Madison WI
2018 “Social Equity in Design” Panel, GreenBuild 2018, Chicago IL
2016 Structures for Inclusion SEED Award Winners Presentation – Marwen, NC State University, Raleigh NC
2016 “Activist Architecture Firms” Panel, Structures for Inclusion, NC State University, Raleigh NC
Individual Honors
2021 Crain’s Notable Women in Construction and Design
2015 Exhibition “This is the House: A Public Installation at the Harvard Graduate School of Design”